ONE FC thrills Singapore again
Click on the pictures above to see scenes from fight night.
ONE Fighting Championship: War of the Lions, Southeast Asia's premier Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) promotion, thrilled a crowd of about 8,000 people at the Singapore Indoor Stadium with its second show in the city-state. The boisterous crowd was blown away during what proved to be the most exciting fight night in Singapore's history.
The two Singaporean fighters did not disappoint, and it was an excellent night for Nicole Chua and Quek Kim Hock. Nicole Chua, Singapore's first female professional MMA fighter, won her debut fight against Jeet Toshi, a 7-time National Kickboxing Champion from India. The pint-sized Singaporean girl, who is far more proficient in Muay Thai than ground fighting, won in the first round by a rear naked choke with less than a year's experience training in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Quek Kim Hock also won by rear naked choke against his American opponent Major Overall who put up quite a spirited challenge but eventually lost in the second round.
In the main event, Zorobabel Moreira continued to show his improved striking before submitting Japan's Felipe Enomoto in the third round. The Japanese fighter was coming off a spectacular win last month but was unable to add to his win streak. Moreira's lightning-fast kicks kept catching Enomoto by surprise, and a vicious leg kick helped set up the submission victory. Moreira improved his record to 6-1 with this victory.
Moreira, a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu World Champion said, "I did one kick and he fell down so I had the opportunity to go for an armbar and I got it. My opponent is very tough, he is a strong guy, but I trained very hard for this fight with my team at Evolve MMA and I am so happy. It was great to see so many fans cheering for me, Singapore is great."
The best fight of the night was clearly the one between Ole Laursen and Eduard Folayang. The two fighters left everything in the cage during a 15 minute war which had the entire crowd on their feet. Though most of the crowd rained down boos after Laursen was declared a split-decision winner, one cannot begrudge him the victory as he didn't hold back and took everything Folayang threw at him.
Japanese fighters Tatsuya Kawajiri and Masakazu Imanari proved their supremacy in their respective weight classes by winning with first round submissions. However, the remaining Japanese fighters on the fight card were not as lucky. DEEP Welterweight Champion Yuya Shirai lost to Brazil's Fabricio Monteiro, who had not had a bout since retiring in 2009. Monteiro made an amazing comeback, winning by unanimous decision at the end of a close fight.
The only disappointment of the evening was the fight between Holland's Melvin Manhoef against Japan's Yoshiyuki Nakanishi. The fight had to be ruled a No Contest after the Dutch K-1 veteran sustained a huge gash on his shin which required immediate medical attention. Manhoef was determined to fight on but the doctors ruled that he could not continue due to the severity of the injury.
CEO and Owner of ONE Fighting Championship™ Victor Cui said, "This was the best show we've had yet. The fights were fantastic from start to finish, the stadium was packed and the crowd loved it so I can't ask for more than that. The growth of MMA in the region has been astounding and I am so proud of how far we've come in just a matter of months. I can't wait for these fights to be shown to 24 Asian countries by ESPN Star Sports next month because people are going to absolutely love them."